Pioneering visual artist, graffiti writer and performance artist Rammellzee is considered one of the most innovative and abstract Hip-Hop figures of all time. Creating theories he coined as “Gothic Futurism and “Iconoclast Panzerism,” Rammellzee and his art concepts laid the foundation for other forward-thinking graphic and performance artists. In a current New York art exhibit, The Letter Racers, Rammellzee’s vision comes to life once again.
The Suzanne Geiss Company has put on display Rammellzee’s “letter racers”; various sculptures fashioned to look like alien spacecraft which all signified a letter in the alphabet from A to Z. Rammellzee’s theories brought forth the idea that language was restrictive and thus his sculptures represented the battle between freedom and rigidity. The artist crafted the sculptures by using materials he found abroad in his travels, constructing them with care in his loft over 15 years.
Although getting his start as a rapper in the early 80s, Rammellzee released his debut LP Missionaries Moving in 2003, with a follow up, Bi-Conicals of the Rammellzee, dropping the following year. Rammellzee passed away in his native Far Rockaway, Queens in 2010 at the age of 50.
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–Photo: Joe Russo